Royal assent is the method by which a monarch formally approves an act of the legislature. In some jurisdictions, royal assent is equivalent to promulgation, while in others, a separate step. Under a modern constitutional monarchy royal assent is considered to be little more than a formality. While the power to veto a law by withholding royal assent was once exercised by European monarchs, such an occurrence has been rare since the eighteenth century. Royal assent is sometimes associated with elaborate ceremonies. In the United Kingdom, for instance, the sovereign may appear in the House of Lords or may appoint Lords Commissioners, who announce that royal assent has been granted at a ceremony held at the Palace of Westminster for this purpose. However, royal assent is granted less ceremonially by letters patent. In other nations, such as Australia, the governor-general signs a bill. In Canada, the governor general may give assent either in person at a ceremony held in the Senate or by a written declaration notifying parliament of their agreement to the bill.
Before the Royal Assent by Commission Act 1541 became law, assent was always required to be given by the sovereign in person before Parliament. The last time royal assent was given by the sovereign in person in Parliament was in the reign of Queen Victoria at a prorogation on 12 August 1854; the Act was repealed and replaced by the Royal Assent Act 1967. However section 1 of that Act does not prevent the sovereign from declaring assent in person if he or she so desires. Royal assent is the final step required for a parliamentary bill to become law. Once a bill is presented to the sovereign or the sovereign's representative, he or she has the following formal options: the sovereign may grant royal assent, thereby making the bill an Act of Parliament; the sovereign may delay the bill's assent through the use of his or her reserve powers, thereby vetoing the bill. The sovereign may refuse royal assent on the advice of her ministers; the last bill, refused assent by the sovereign was the Scottish Militia Bill during Queen Anne's reign in 1708.
Under modern constitutional conventions, the sovereign acts on, in accordance with, the advice of his or her ministers. However, there is some disagreement among scholars as to whether the monarch should withhold royal assent to a bill if advised to do so by her ministers. Since these ministers most enjoy the support of parliament and obtain the passage of bills, it is improbable that they would advise the sovereign to withhold assent. Hence, in modern practice, the issue has never arisen, royal assent has not been withheld; the sovereign is believed not to have the power to withhold assent from a bill against the advice of ministers. Legislative power was exercised by the sovereign acting on the advice of the Curia regis, or Royal Council, in which important magnates and clerics participated and which evolved into parliament. In 1265, the Earl of Leicester irregularly called a full parliament without royal authorisation. Membership of the so-called Model Parliament, established in 1295 under Edward I included bishops, earls, two knights from each shire and two burgesses from each borough.
The body came to be divided into two branches: bishops, abbots and barons formed the House of Lords, while the shire and borough representatives formed the House of Commons. The King would seek the consent of both houses before making any law. During Henry VI's reign, it became regular practice for the two houses to originate legislation in the form of bills, which would not become law unless the sovereign's assent was obtained, as the sovereign was, still remains, the enactor of laws. Hence, all Acts include the clause "Be it enacted by the Queen's most Excellent Majesty, by and with the advice and consent of the Lords Spiritual and Temporal, Commons, in this present Parliament assembled, by the authority of the same, as follows...". The Parliament Acts 1911 and 1949 provide a second potential preamble if the House of Lords were to be excluded from the process; the power of parliament to pass bills was thwarted by monarchs. Charles I dissolved parliament in 1629, after it passed motions and bills critical of—and seeking to restrict—his arbitrary exercise of power.
During the eleven years of personal rule that followed, Charles performed dubious actions such as raising taxes without Parliament's approval. After the English Civil War, it was accepted that parliament should be summoned to meet but it was still commonplace for monarchs to refuse royal assent to bills. In 1678, Charles II withheld his assent from a bill "for preserving the Peace of the Kingdom by raising the Militia, continuing them in Duty for Two and Forty Days," suggesting that he, not parliament, should control the militia; the last Stuart monarch, Anne withheld on 11 March 1708, on the advice of her ministers, her assent to the Scottish Militia Bill. No monarch has since withheld royal assent on a bill passed by the British parliament. During the rule of the succeeding Hanoverian dynasty, power was exercised more by parliament and the government; the first Hanoverian monarch, George I, relied on his ministers to a greater extent than had previous monarchs. Hanoverian monarchs attempted to restore royal control over legislation: G
Michael Moore (British politician)
Michael Kevin Moore is a British Liberal Democrat politician. Born in Northern Ireland, but raised in Scotland, he qualified as a chartered accountant and worked as a researcher to the prominent Liberal Democrat politician, David Steel. At the 1997 general election, Moore succeeded Steel as the Liberal Democrat MP for the Scottish Borders constituency of Tweeddale and Lauderdale, he joined the Liberal Democrat Frontbench Team in 2005, held many portfolios, including Defence, Foreign Affairs, International Development and Northern Ireland & Scotland. Following the 2010 general election, the formation of the Conservative-Liberal Democrat coalition, the cabinet post of Scottish Secretary was given to the Liberal Democrats Danny Alexander; however following the resignation of Chief Secretary to the Treasury David Laws a month Alexander took his role, Moore was appointed the Scottish Secretary on 29 May 2010. After entering office, Moore oversaw the implementation of the Scotland Act 2012, which granted further devolution to Scotland.
He was removed from the post in a Cabinet reshuffle in October 2013. Moore was elected on two occasions to serve as Member of Parliament for the constituency of Berwickshire and Selkirk, was returned on two earlier occasions as MP for the previous constituency of Tweeddale and Lauderdale, he was defeated in the 2015 general election by the SNP candidate. Moore was born in Dundonald, Northern Ireland, where his father was serving as a chaplain in the British Army, he moved with his family to Wishaw, Scotland, in 1970 and to the Scottish Borders in 1981. He was educated at Strathallan School, Jedburgh Grammar School and Edinburgh University, where he studied politics and modern history. On leaving university he worked for a year as a researcher for Lib Dem MP Archy Kirkwood before joining the Edinburgh office of accountants Coopers & Lybrand, he qualified as a Scottish Chartered Accountant, going on to be a manager in the office's corporate finance practice. Moore was elected to the Westminster parliament during the 1997 general election as the MP for Tweeddale and Lauderdale succeeding David Steel following his retirement with a majority of 1,489.
In 2001 he retained his seat increasing his majority to 5,157. In 2005 following boundary changes Moore contested the Berwickshire and Selkirk and won with a majority of 5,901, he defended the seat in 2010 once again retaining this time with a decreased majority of 5,675. After his election to Parliament he served as the party's Scottish spokesman on the economy and a member of the House of Commons Scottish Affairs Select Committee before taking up the position of Transport Spokesman. In November 2001 he was made Deputy Foreign Affairs Spokesman under Charles Kennedy followed by the position of Defence spokesman. Under the leadership of Sir Menzies Campbell he looked after Foreign Affairs and under Nick Clegg took the title of Shadow Secretary of State for International Development. In 2002 he was elected to the internal position of Deputy Leader of the Scottish Liberal Democrats and re-elected to the role in 2007. Moore resigned from that position on 20 September 2010 citing the pressures of an increased workload following his elevation to Secretary of State for Scotland following the 2010 general election.
Following the 2010 general election and the coalition government formed between the Conservative party and the Liberal Democrats, Moore was appointed Secretary of State for Scotland on 29 May 2010, a move that followed the promotion of fellow Scottish MP Danny Alexander to Chief Secretary to the Treasury. Shortly after becoming Secretary of State for Scotland, he appeared on the BBC's Question Time programme, where he was challenged by an audience member who felt concerned that he would be made homeless by the government's new housing policies. In response Moore said "the horrible truth is that across the country everyone is going to have to make a contribution to getting the country right", before going on to explain that measures taken in the emergency budget were there to help the lowest paid; the audience member challenged Moore on the response and told him to "get a grip". In the same programme, Moore said that fellow Cabinet member Michael Gove had made a major mistake in his announcement about the scrapping of the school rebuilding programme but said that the Education Secretary had apologised with "grace" for it.
In September 2010 when compiling their list of the 50 most influential Liberal Democrats Moore was named by the Daily Telegraph as the 13th most influential. Describing him within the context of the role he occupied as a "safe pair of hands in a job where the definition of success is being able to keep out of trouble" As part of the British government's 2010 Comprehensive Spending Review due to be announced on 20 October, Moore lent his support to Defence Secretary Liam Fox in cabinet discussions to retain funding for two aircraft carriers which would be constructed in yards around Britain, including in Glasgow and Rosyth in Scotland; the project, costing £5.2 billion was thought to be under threat following the spending review which many believed could result in a 20% cut in the Ministry of Defence budget. He provided backing for the upkeep of RAF bases in Kinloss and Lossiemouth which it was estimated were worth 6000 jobs to the Moray economy after campaigners had feared that the bases may be closed as a result of the budget cuts.
On visiting the bases Moore said: "What I am determined to do is ensure we make the best possible case for the bases." But added that he could make "no guarantees" about the future of the bases. On 9 October 2010 it was announced t
European Communities Act 1972 (UK)
The European Communities Act 1972 known as the ECA 1972 is an Act of the Parliament of the United Kingdom which made legal provision for the accession of the United Kingdom to the three European Communities, namely the EEC, the Coal and Steel Community. The Treaty of Accession was signed by the Conservative Prime Minister Edward Heath and the President of the European Commission Franco Maria Malfatti in Brussels on 22 January 1972; the Act provided for the incorporation into UK law of the whole of European Community law and its "acquis communautaire": its Treaties and Directives, together with judgments of the European Court of Justice. By the Act, Community Law became binding on all legislation passed by the UK Parliament. Arguably the most significant statute to be passed by the Heath government of 1970-74, the Act is one of the most significant UK constitutional statutes passed; the act has been amended from its original form, incorporating the changes wrought by the Single European Act, the Maastricht Treaty, the Amsterdam Treaty, the Nice Treaty, the Treaty of Lisbon.
On 13 July 2017, the Brexit Secretary, David Davis, introduced what became the European Union Act to Parliament which makes provision for repealing the 1972 Act on "exit day", when enacted defined as 29 March 2019 at 11 p.m. but postponed by EU decision to either 22 May 2019 or 12 April 2019. When the European Communities came into being in 1958, the UK chose to remain aloof and instead join the alternative bloc, EFTA; the British government regretted its decision, in 1961, along with Denmark and Norway, the UK applied to join the three Communities. However, President Charles de Gaulle saw British membership as a Trojan horse for US influence, vetoed it; the four countries resubmitted their applications in 1967, the French veto was lifted upon Georges Pompidou succeeding de Gaulle in 1969. In 1970, accession negotiations took place between the UK Government, led by Conservative Prime Minister Edward Heath, the European Communities and various European leaders. Despite disagreements over the CAP and the UK's relationship with the Commonwealth, terms were agreed.
In October 1971, after a lengthy Commons debate, MPs voted 356-244 in favour of joining the EEC. For the Treaty to take effect upon entry into the Communities on 1 January 1973, for the UK to embrace the EEC Institutions and Community law, an Act of Parliament was required. Only three days after the signing of the Treaty, a European Communities Bill of just 12 clauses was presented to the House of Commons by Geoffrey Rippon; the European Communities Act came into being, Edward Heath signed the Treaty of Accession in Brussels on 22 January 1972. Denmark and Ireland joined the Community on the same day, 1 January 1973, as the UK; the European Communities Bill was introduced the House of Commons for its first reading by Geoffrey Rippon, Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster on 26 January 1972. On 17 February 1972, the House of Commons voted narrowly by 309-301 in favour of the Bill at its second reading, after three days of intense debate. Just before the vote the Prime Minister Edward Heath argued his case in the debate with the following words.
The Bill passed on to Committee Stage before its third reading. During this discussion in the House of Commons, MPs pointed out that the Government had structured the European Communities Bill so that Parliament could debate the technical issues about how the treaty enactment would occur but could not debate the treaty of accession itself and decried this sacrifice of Parliament's sovereignty to the Government's desire to join the European project. On 13 July 1972, the House of Commons voted 301-284 in favour of the Bill in its third and final reading before passing on to the House of Lords. Before the vote took place, Geoffrey Rippon argued in the House of Commons before the vote: The Bill passed to the House of Lords; the Act received Royal Assent on 17 October, the UK's instrument of ratification of the Treaty of Accession was deposited the next day with the Italian government as required by the Treaty. Since the Treaty specified its effective date as 1 January 1973 and the Act specified only "entry date" for its actions, the Act and the Treaty took effect 1 January 1973, when the United Kingdom became a member state of the European Communities along with Denmark and the Republic of Ireland.
The European Communities Act was the instrument whereby the UK Parliament effected the changes required by the Treaty of Accession by which the UK joined the European Union. Section 2 says "the Treaties are without further enactment to be given legal effect" in the UK, it enables, under section 2, UK government ministers to make regulations to transpose EU Directives and rulings of the European Court of Justice into UK law. The Treaty itself says the member states will conform themselves to the European Communities existing and future decisions; the Act and the Treaty of Accession have been interpreted by UK courts
Good Friday Agreement
The Good Friday Agreement or Belfast Agreement was a major political development in the Northern Ireland peace process of the 1990s. Northern Ireland's present devolved system of government is based on the agreement; the agreement created a number of institutions between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland, between the Republic of Ireland and the United Kingdom. The agreement is made up of two inter-related documents, both agreed in Belfast on Good Friday, 10 April 1998: a multi-party agreement by most of Northern Ireland's political parties; the agreement set out a complex series of provisions relating to a number of areas including: The status and system of government of Northern Ireland within the United Kingdom. The relationship between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland; the relationship between the Republic of Ireland and the United Kingdom. Issues relating to sovereignty and cultural rights, decommissioning of weapons, demilitarisation and policing were central to the agreement.
The agreement was approved by voters across the island of Ireland in two referendums held on 22 May 1998. In Northern Ireland, voters were asked in the 1998 Northern Ireland Good Friday Agreement referendum whether they supported the multi-party agreement. In the Republic of Ireland, voters were asked whether they would allow the state to sign the agreement and allow necessary constitutional changes to facilitate it; the people of both jurisdictions needed to approve the agreement. The British–Irish Agreement came into force on 2 December 1999; the Democratic Unionist Party was the only major political group in Northern Ireland to oppose the Good Friday Agreement. The agreement was made between the British and Irish governments and eight political parties or groupings from Northern Ireland: the Ulster Unionist Party, the Social Democratic and Labour Party, Sinn Féin, the Alliance Party, the Progressive Unionist Party, the Northern Ireland Women's Coalition, the Ulster Democratic Party and Labour.
The agreement comprises two elements: the legal agreement between the two governments, signed by the leaders of the two governments. The former text has just four articles. Technically, this scheduled agreement can be distinguished as the Multi-Party Agreement, as opposed to the Belfast Agreement itself; the vague wording of some of the provisions, described as "constructive ambiguity", helped ensure acceptance of the agreement and served to postpone debate on some of the more contentious issues. Most notably these included paramilitary decommissioning, police reform and the normalisation of Northern Ireland; the agreement acknowledged: that the majority of the people of Northern Ireland wished to remain a part of the United Kingdom. Both of these views were acknowledged as being legitimate. For the first time, the Irish government accepted in a binding international agreement that Northern Ireland was part of the United Kingdom; the Irish Constitution was amended to implicitly recognise Northern Ireland as part of the United Kingdom's sovereign territory, conditional upon the consent for a united Ireland from majorities of the people in both jurisdictions on the island.
On the other hand, the language of the agreement reflects a switch in the United Kingdom's statutory emphasis from one for the union to one for a united Ireland. The agreement thus left the issue of future sovereignty over Northern Ireland open-ended; the agreement reached was that Northern Ireland was part of the United Kingdom, would remain so until a majority of the people both of Northern Ireland and of the Republic of Ireland wished otherwise. Should that happen the British and Irish governments are under "a binding obligation" to implement that choice. Irrespective of Northern Ireland's constitutional status within the United Kingdom, or part of a united Ireland, the right of "the people of Northern Ireland" to "identify themselves and be accepted as Irish or British, or both" was recognised. By the words "people of Northern Ireland" the Agreement meant "all persons born in Northern Ireland and having, at the time of their birth, at least one parent, a British citizen, an Irish citizen or is otherwise entitled to reside in Northern Ireland without any restriction on their period of residence."The two governments agreed, irrespective of the position of Northern Ireland: the power of the sovereign government with jurisdiction there shall be exercised with rigorous impartiality on behalf of all the people in the diversity of their identities and traditions and shall be founded on the principles of full respect for, equality of, political, economic and cultural rights, of freedom from discrimination for all citizens, of parity of esteem and of just and equal treatment for the identity and aspirations of both communities.
As part of the agreement, the British parliament repealed the Government of Ireland Act 1920 and the people of the Republic of Ireland amended Articles 2 and 3 of the Constitution o
2016 United Kingdom European Union membership referendum
The United Kingdom European Union membership referendum known as the EU referendum and the Brexit referendum, took place on 23 June 2016 in the United Kingdom and Gibraltar to ask the electorate if the country should remain a member of, or leave the European Union, under the provisions of the European Union Referendum Act 2015 and the Political Parties and Referendums Act 2000. The referendum resulted in 51.9% of votes being in favour of leaving the EU. Although the referendum was non-binding, the government of that time had promised to implement the result, it initiated the official EU withdrawal process on 29 March 2017, meaning that the UK was due to leave the EU before 11PM on 29 March 2019, UK time, when the two-year period for Brexit negotiations expired. Membership of the EU and its predecessors has long been a topic of debate in the United Kingdom; the country joined what were the three European Communities, principally the European Economic Community, in 1973. A previous referendum on continued membership of the European Communities was held in 1975, it was approved by 67.2% of those who voted.
In May 2015, in accordance with a Conservative Party manifesto commitment following their victory at the 2015 UK general election, the legal basis for a referendum on EU membership was established by the UK Parliament through the European Union Referendum Act 2015. Britain Stronger in Europe was the official group campaigning for the UK to remain in the EU, was endorsed by the Prime Minister David Cameron and Chancellor George Osborne. Vote Leave was the official group campaigning for the UK to leave the EU, was fronted by the Conservative MP Boris Johnson, Secretary of State for Justice Michael Gove and Labour MP Gisela Stuart. Other campaign groups, political parties, trade unions and prominent individuals were involved, each side had supporters from across the political spectrum. After the result, financial markets reacted negatively worldwide, Cameron announced that he would resign as Prime Minister and Leader of the Conservative Party, having campaigned unsuccessfully for a "Remain" vote.
It was the first time that a national referendum result had gone against the preferred option of the UK Government. Cameron was succeeded by Home Secretary Theresa May on 13 July 2016; the opposition Labour Party faced a leadership challenge as a result of the EU referendum. Several campaign groups and parties have been fined by the Electoral Commission for campaign finance irregularities, with the fines imposed on Leave. EU and BeLeave constrained by the cap on the commission's fines. There is an ongoing investigation into possible Russian interference in the referendum; the European Communities were formed in the 1950s – the European Coal and Steel Community in 1952, the European Atomic Energy Community and European Economic Community in 1957. The EEC, the more ambitious of the three, came to be known as the "Common Market"; the UK first applied to join them in 1961. A application was successful, the UK joined in 1973. Political integration gained greater focus when the Maastricht Treaty established the European Union in 1993, which incorporated the European Communities.
Prior to the 2010 general election, the Leader of the Conservative Party David Cameron had given a "cast iron" promise of a referendum on the Lisbon Treaty, which he backtracked on after all EU countries had ratified the treaty before the election. When they attended the May 2012 NATO summit meeting, UK Prime Minister David Cameron, Foreign Secretary William Hague and Ed Llewellyn discussed the idea of using a European Union referendum as a concession to energise the Eurosceptic wing of the Conservative Party. Cameron promised in January 2013 that, should the Conservatives win a parliamentary majority at the 2015 general election, the British government would negotiate more favourable arrangements for continuing British membership of the EU, before holding a referendum on whether the UK should remain in or leave the EU; the Conservative Party published a draft EU Referendum Bill in May 2013, outlined its plans for renegotiation followed by an in-out vote, were the party to be re-elected in 2015.
The draft Bill stated that the referendum had to be held no than 31 December 2017. The draft legislation was taken forward as a Private Member's Bill by Conservative MP James Wharton, known as the European Union Bill 2013; the bill's First Reading in the House of Commons took place on 19 June 2013. Cameron was said by a spokesperson to be "very pleased" and would ensure the Bill was given "the full support of the Conservative Party". Regarding the ability of the bill to bind the UK Government in the 2015–20 Parliament to holding such a referendum, a parliamentary research paper noted that:The Bill provides for a referendum on continued EU membership by the end of December 2017 and does not otherwise specify the timing, other than requiring the Secretary of State to bring forward orders by the end of 2016. If no party obtained a majority at the, there might be some uncertainty about the passage of the orders in the next Parliament; the bill received its Second Reading on 5 July 2
Devolution is the statutory delegation of powers from the central government of a sovereign state to govern at a subnational level, such as a regional or local level. It is a form of administrative decentralization. Devolved territories have the power to make legislation relevant to the area. Devolution differs from federalism in that the devolved powers of the subnational authority may be temporary and are reversible residing with the central government. Thus, the state remains de jure unitary. Legislation creating devolved parliaments or assemblies can be repealed or amended by central government in the same way as any statute. In federal systems, by contrast, sub-unit government is guaranteed in the constitution, so the powers of the sub-units cannot be withdrawn unilaterally by the central government; the sub-units therefore have a lower degree of protection under devolution than under federalism. Australia is a federation, it has two territories with less power than states. The Australian Capital Territory refused self-government in a 1978 referendum, but was given limited self-government by a House of Assembly from 1979, a Legislative Assembly with wider powers in 1988.
The Northern Territory of Australia refused statehood in a 1998 referendum. The rejection was a surprise to both the Northern Territory governments. Territory legislation can be disallowed by the Commonwealth Parliament in Canberra, with one notable example being the NT's short lived voluntary euthanasia legislation. Although Canada is a federal state, a large portion of its land mass in the north is under the legislative jurisdiction of the federal government; this has been the case since 1870. In 1870 the Rupert’s Land and North-Western Territory Order effected the admission of Rupert’s Land and the North-Western Territory to Canada, pursuant to section 146 of the Constitution Act, 1867 and the Rupert’s Land Act, 1868; the Manitoba Act, 1870, which created Manitoba out of part of Rupert’s Land designated the remaining territories the Northwest Territories, over which Parliament was to exercise full legislative authority under the Constitution Act, 1871. Since the 1970s, the federal government has been transferring its decision-making powers to northern governments.
This means greater local control and accountability by northerners for decisions central to the future of the territories. Yukon was carved from the Northwest Territories in 1898 but it remained a federal territory. Subsequently, in 1905, the provinces of Alberta and Saskatchewan were created from the Northwest Territories. Other portions of Rupert's Land were added to the provinces of Ontario and Quebec, extending the provinces northward from their previous narrow band around the St. Lawrence and lower Great Lakes; the District of Ungava was a regional administrative district of Canada's Northwest Territories from 1895 to 1912. The continental areas of said district were transferred by the Parliament of Canada with the adoption of the Quebec Boundary Extension Act, 1898 and the Quebec Boundaries Extension Act, 1912; the status of the interior of Labrador, believed part of Ungava was settled in 1927 by the British Judicial Committee of the Privy Council, which ruled in favour of Newfoundland.
In 1999, the federal government created Nunavut pursuant to a land claim agreement reached with Inuit, the indigenous people of Canada’s Eastern Arctic. The offshore islands to the west and north of Quebec remained part of the Northwest Territories until the creation of Nunavut in 1999. Since that time, the federal government has devolved legislative jurisdiction to the territories. Enabling the territories to become more self-sufficient and prosperous and to play a stronger role in the Canadian federation is considered a key component to development in Canada’s North. Among the three territories, devolution is most advanced in Yukon; the Northwest Territories was governed from Ottawa from 1870 until the 1970s, except for the brief period between 1898 and 1905 when it was governed by an elected assembly. The Carrothers Commission was established in April 1963 by the government of Lester B. Pearson to examine the development of government in the NWT, it conducted surveys of opinion in the NWT in 1965 and 1966 and reported in 1966.
Major recommendations included that the seat of government of the territories should be located in the territories. Yellowknife was selected as the territorial capital as a result. Transfer of many responsibilities from the federal government to that of the territories was recommended and carried out; this included responsibility for education, small business, public works, social services and local government. Since the report, the transfer of the government of Northwest Territories has taken over responsibilities for several other programs and services including the delivery of health care, social services, administration of airports, forestry management; the legislative jurisdiction of the territorial legislature is set out in section 16 of the Northwest Territories Act. Now, the government of Canada is negotiating the transfer of the Department of Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development's remaining provincial-type responsibilities in the NWT; these include the legislative powers and responsibilities for land and resources associated with the department's Northern Affairs Program with respect to: Powers to develop, conserve and regulate of surface and subsurface natural resources in the NWT for mining and minerals administration, water management, land management and environmental management.
1975 United Kingdom European Communities membership referendum
The United Kingdom European Communities membership referendum known variously as the Referendum on the European Community, the Common Market referendum and EEC membership referendum, took place under the provisions of the Referendum Act 1975 on 5 June 1975 in the United Kingdom to gauge support for the country's continued membership of the European Communities — known at the time as the European Community and the Common Market — which it had entered two and a half years earlier on 1 January 1973 under the Conservative government of Edward Heath. Labour's manifesto for the October 1974 general election had promised that the people would decide through the ballot box whether to remain in the EC; this was the first national referendum to be held throughout the entire United Kingdom and remained the only UK-wide referendum until the 2011 referendum on alternative voting was held thirty-six years and was the only referendum to be held on the UK's relationship with Europe until the 2016 referendum on continued EU membership.
The electorate expressed significant support for EC membership, with 67% in favour on a national turnout of 64%. The referendum result was not binding. In a 1975 pamphlet Prime Minister Harold Wilson said: "I ask you to use your vote. For it is your vote; the Government will accept your verdict." The pamphlet said: "Now the time has come for you to decide. The Government will accept your decision — whichever way it goes." The February 1974 general election had yielded a Labour minority government, which won a majority in the October 1974 general election. Labour pledged in its February 1974 manifesto to renegotiate the terms of British accession to the EC, to consult the public on whether Britain should stay in the EC on the new terms, if they were acceptable to the government; the Labour Party had feared the consequences of EC membership, such as the large differentials between the high price of food under the Common Agricultural Policy and the low prices prevalent in Commonwealth markets, as well as the loss of both economic sovereignty and the freedom of governments to engage in socialist industrial policies, party leaders stated their opinion that the Conservatives had negotiated unfavourable terms for Britain.
The EC heads of government agreed to a deal in Dublin on 11 March 1975. On 9 April the House of Commons voted by 396 to 170 to continue within the Common Market on the new terms. Along with these developments, the government drafted a Referendum Bill, to be moved in case of a successful renegotiation; the referendum debate and campaign was an unusual time in British politics and was the third national vote to be held in seventeen months. During the campaign, the Labour Cabinet was split and its members campaigned on each side of the question, an unprecedented breach of Cabinet collective responsibility. Most votes in the House of Commons in preparation for the referendum were only carried after opposition support, the Government faced several defeats on technical issues such as the handling and format of the referendum counts; when the European Coal and Steel Community was instituted in 1952, the United Kingdom decided not to become a member. The UK was still absent when the Treaty of Rome was signed in 1957, creating the European Economic Community.
However, in the late 1950s the Conservative government of Harold Macmillan changed its attitude and appointed Edward Heath to submit an application and lead negotiations for Britain to enter the Common Market. The application was made at a meeting of the EC in January 1963, but the French president Charles de Gaulle rebuffed and vetoed Britain's request. Despite the veto, Britain restarted talks with the European Communities countries in 1967. Heath included negotiating membership in the 1970 Conservative manifesto. Heath became Prime Minister, led many of the negotiations: he struck up a friendship with the new French president Georges Pompidou, who oversaw the lifting of the veto and thus paved the way for UK membership. Between 21 and 28 October 1971 the House of Commons debated whether or not the UK should become a member of the EC, with Prime Minister Edward Heath commenting just before the vote: The House of Commons voted 356-244 in favour of the motion, with the Prime Minister commenting straight afterwards on behalf of the house.
No referendum was held when Britain agreed to an accession treaty on 22 January 1972 or when the European Communities Act 1972 went through the legislative process, on the grounds that to hold one would be unconstitutional. The United Kingdom joined the European Communities on 1 January 1973, along with Denmark and the Republic of Ireland; the EC would become the European Union. Throughout this period, the Labour Party was divided, both on the substantive issue of EC accession and on the question of whether accession ought to be approved by referendum. In 1971 pro-Market figures such as Roy Jenkins, the Deputy Leader of the Labour Party, said a Labour government would have agreed to the terms of accession secured by the Con